Wildlife Informer is reader-supported. When you click and buy we may earn an affiliate commission at no cost to you. Learn more.

12 Types of Common Spiders in Texas (Pictures)

Spiders are arachnids with 8 legs and fangs they use to inject their prey with venom. Although they are subject to many people’s fears and nightmares, not all spiders are harmful to humans. Texas is home to over 900 species of spiders, making them a frequent occurrence in most people’s daily lives. The common spiders in Texas range from venomous to completely non-threatening. However, the two can sometimes be confused due to their similar appearance.

This article will cover information on 12 spiders you can commonly find in homes or around areas we often frequent, including identifying which ones are venomous to humans.

Let’s learn more!

12 common spiders in Texas

The 12 different species of common spiders in Texas we look at in this article are the Spinybacked Orbweaver, Black and Yellow Garden Spider, Black Widow Spider, Brown Recluse Spider, Carolina Wolf Spider, Common House Spider, Southern House Spider, Woodlouse Hunter Spider, Texas Brown Tarantula, Long-Bodied Cellar Spider, Desert Grass Spider, and Giant Crab Spider.

1. Spinybacked orbweaver

Spinybacked orbweaver on a cobweb
Spinybacked orbweaver on a cobweb | image by Joe Lapp via Flickr | CC BY 2.0

Scientific name: Gasteracantha cancriformis

Probably one of the most unique spiders living in wooded, tree-dense areas of Texas is the spinybacked orbweaver. While you can find most of them in the eastern counties, some individuals also live in the state’s western counties.

They have distinctive abdomens ranging from white and yellow to red, with black and yellow spots. They are also interestingly shaped with six red triangular pointed spines.

Due to their bright colors, they are often mistaken as poisonous to humans. However, their venom is not potent enough to harm us or our pets. While generally non-aggressive, they will bite if they feel threatened.

2. Black and yellow garden spider

Black and yellow garden spider
Black and yellow garden spider | Image by Roland Steinmann from Pixabay

Scientific name: Argiope aurantia

Another common orbweaver species in Texas, is the black and yellow garden spider. You can find these spiders in gardens, on porches, eaves of homes, or anywhere with a breezeway for them to build their web. These spiders are actually beneficial to your garden and not venomous to humans.

As their name suggests, they have distinctively black, yellow, and white patterns on their bodies, both lines and oval-like. They are sometimes called zigzag spiders, corn spiders, or golden garden spiders. Males can grow up to 0.35 inches and females up to 1.1 inches long.

3. Black widow spider

Black widow on web
Black widow on web | Image by jgiammatteo from Pixabay

Scientific genus: Latrodectus

One of the most venomous spiders found in Texas is the Black widow. You can feel severe burning, pain, swelling, and redness where they bite you and their venom can affect your nervous system. The two species found in Texas are the:

  • Southern black widow (Latrodectus mactans): mostly in east Texas
  • Western black widow (Latrodectus hesperus): southwestern Texas to the Lower Rio Grande Valley

These spiders will hang out underneath furniture, in garages, around planters, or in your garden. They are identifiable by the orange or red hourglass pattern on the underside of their black abdomens. Females also have large bulbous abdomens.

4. Brown recluse spider

Brown recluse on denim
Brown recluse on denim | Image by Robby Lockeby from Pixabay

Scientific name: Loxosceles reclusa

The brown recluse, also known as the violin spider, is also very venomous, comparable to the black widow. Their venom can lead to cell death around the bite site and damage to blood vessels. Also known as the Violin spider, they have a distinctive violin-shaped mark on their head. They also have long legs with consistent colors and no stripes.

You may also like:  15 Examples of Ambush Predators (With Pictures)

You can find them throughout Texas, specifically in dry, dark areas. This includes garages, attics, cardboard boxes, basements, sheds, and woodpiles.

5. Carolina wolf spider

Carolina wolf spider
Carolina wolf spider | image by Fritz Flohr Reynolds via Flickr | CC BY-SA 2.0

Scientific name: Hogna Carolinensis

While not as venomous as the black widow and brown recluse, the bite of a Carolina wolf spider is still painful to humans. These spiders look like small tarantulas with hairy bodies and legs. They also hunt their prey by digging holes instead of spinning webs.

Despite their name, you can find these spiders in Texas, especially around homes and on manicured lawns. They are the largest wolf spider species in North America with leg spans of up to 4 inches.

6. Common house spider

common house spider on artificial plant
Common house spider in artificial plant | image by Fyn Kynd via Flickr | CC BY 2.0

Scientific name: Parasteatoda tepidariorum

The common house spider, also called the American House spider, is the inspiration for the cobwebs we typically associate with Halloween. They have brown bulb-like abdomens with dark and white lines and patches.

These spiders are harmless to humans and prefer to play dead if you catch them. However, if you are rough, they can bite and cause some pain or swelling. As their name suggests, they are one of the most common spiders in North America and can be found throughout Texas.

7. Southern house spider

Southern house spider
Southern house spider | image by oliver.dodd via Flickr | CC BY 2.0

Scientific name: Kukulcania hibernalis formerly Filistata hibernalis

The southern house spider is a large and fast spider that can easily scare people when seen in homes. These spiders also look very similar in color and shape to the poisonous Brown recluse spider. However, they don’t have the recluse’s violin-shaped markings and are not venomous to humans.

You still have to be cautious, though, as their bite can still be painful if they feel threatened. You can find these spiders throughout Texas, typically in the crevices and cracks of houses, barns, and other man-made structures.

8. Woodlouse hunter spider

Woodlouse hunter spider on a rock
Woodlouse hunter spider on a rock | image by Mvuijlst via Wikimedia Commons | CC BY-SA 3.0

Scientific name: Dysdera crocata

The woodlouse hunter spider is usually dark red with a shiny yellowish-brown abdomen. They also have six eyes and very large fangs for their size. However, these spiders are not medically harmful to humans, and their bites are as painful as a bee sting.

You can typically find these spiders in warm places, such as under rocks, logs, bricks, and anywhere near woodlice. Sometimes even in your house. They are common in most Texas cities, including Austin and San Antonio.

9. Texas brown tarantula

Texas brown tarantula
Texas brown tarantula | image by Robert Nunnally via Flickr | CC BY 2.0

Scientific name: Aphonopelma hentzi

When you’re out and about in nature, you can commonly see the Texas Brown tarantula throughout the state. However, sometimes they can wander into homes from open fields or farmlands. These spiders are light brown with orange hairs and darker legs that have grayish-white hues.

They are docile spiders that prefer to run and hide instead of being confrontational. They do have urticating hairs, however, that they can flick at you when threatened.

10. Long-bodied cellar spider

Long-bodied cellar spider
Long-bodied Cellar Spider | image by Judy Gallagher via Flickr | CC BY 2.0

Scientific name: Pholcus phalangioides

You can find the long-bodied cellar spider throughout the state, especially in homes. They have elongated bodies and legs that are 5 or 6 times longer than their body. You can commonly find them hanging out on the ceiling of cellars, rooms, garages, and caves.

You may also like:  10 Types of Animals That Store Food (Pictures)

These spiders are not harmful to humans and have very short fangs. With their long legs, they are sometimes referred to as Daddy-Long-Legs. However, this nickname is also given to harvestmen (Opiliones) that also have long legs but have oval bodies and are not technically spiders even though they are arachnids.

11. Desert grass spider

Desert grass spider on its web
Desert grass spider on its web | image by Juan Cruzado Cortés via Wikimedia Commons | CC BY-SA 4.0

Scientific name: Agelenopsis aperta

The desert grass spider, also called the funnel-web spider, is often mistaken for the Wolf spider. However, these spiders are not known to be harmful to humans. They are black, brown, and gray in color with striped lines on their body and legs.

You can find these spiders throughout Texas into northwestern Mexico. They prefer arid, dry climates, including grasslands.

12. Giant crab spider

Giant crab spider
Giant crab spider (huntsman spider) | image by Manan Singh Mahadev via Flickr | CC BY 2.0

Scientific name: Heteropoda venatoria

The giant crab spider gets their name from their crablike behavior and appearance. They scuttle sideways and don’t spin webs. Instead, they wait for prey by camouflaging themselves using their ability to change their body color.

Although one of the larger crab spider species, these spiders still have mouth parts that are too small to pierce human skin, so they aren’t harmful to humans. You can commonly find these spiders in the extreme western counties of Texas.

The giant crab spider is a type of huntsman spider, which is one of the biggest types of spiders in the world.